I wish all of our readers in the United States a happy, healthy, and safe Thanksgiving holiday. For the rest of you who live in Canada (and already celebrated Thanksgiving back in October) as well as our friends in Europe, Asia, and other regions in this rock we call home: have a happy Thursday, I guess.
Valve Software has kicked off its annual sale. While it doesn't call it a "Black Friday" or "Cyber Monday" sale like others do, it is intended to land on those days for maximum effect. This year's "Steam Exploration Sale" runs from November 26 to December 2 and features discounts and deals on 5,649 games right now.
Unlike most U.S. retailers, the world's largest retailer of games will be closed on Thanksgiving in the United States. GameStop announced that it will shut down its stores in the United States next Thursday. CEO Paul Raines confirmed the news during a post-earnings call on Thursday.
"We will be closed on Thanksgiving Day next week in the United States out of respect for our associates and their families," he said. "Sometimes, we have to not let the pressure from other retailers distract us from our values."
Microsoft announced this morning that - from Nov. 4 to January 3 - it will knock $50 off the price of all Xbox One units being sold at select retail outlets in the United States. This follows a price cut in the UK last month. This price reduction will be available at leading retailers including Amazon, GameStop, Best Buy, Target, Toys R Us, Walmart and Microsoft stores.
On behalf of everyone at the Entertainment Consumers Association (ECA) and the staff here at GamePolitics, I wish you, our wonderful readers, a happy and safe Labor Day!
We'll be back tomorrow! Until then, I hope you are enjoying your day off - assuming you were lucky enough to get one - doing something fun, exciting or interesting (the days off get pretty thin between now and November, so we have to enjoy them when they come along!) Be good to yourselves and others today.
On behalf of the ECA, GamePolitics, and my good friends Andrew Eisen and E. Zachary Knight, I wish you a happy and safe Independence Day. We'll be busy today grilling meat, drinking tasty beverages, watching parades, spending time with family, watching fireworks, playing games or watching cat videos today, but we'll be back on Monday with bells on.
We hope you'll do something fun today and - if you are old enough to have a job - that your employer gave you the day off.
To all of our friends outside the United States, enjoy your Friday!
On behalf of everyone here at GamePolitics and the ECA we wish our readers a safe and happy holiday. We hope you are enjoying your extended weekend and are out (or in, as the case may be) having fun on the unofficial start of summer.
If you want an explanation of what Memorial Day is all about and why it is a very important holiday to a majority of Americans, then you should check out usmemorialday.org.
On behalf of everyone at the Entertainment Consumers Association and GamePolitics I'd like to wish all of our wonderful readers a very Happy Easter and Passover.
If you do not celebrate either of those holidays, then we wish you a weekend filled with family, friends, and fun.
If you don't like having fun, think your family is bonkers, and that friends are a pain in the a$$, then I hope you do not get hit by a bus this weekend.
- James and the ECA team.
Happy birthday to U.S. Presidents George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. I apologize on behalf of our government who took their birthdays away for some odd reason. They'd like to blame Martin Luther King Jr. Day for that, but we reject the argument; all three of these great men can have a federal holiday in the month of February!
On behalf of GamePolitics, I wish you a happy Valentine's Day filled with love, good food, and even better company if at all possible. For those of you who are single, Andrew Eisen offers an instructional video on how to ask the fairer sex out for a night on the town, a quiet evening at home, or whatever social function you can imagine. You can check out the video to your left. If you are single and like it that way, then I encourage you to do something fun today, like watch the new season of House of Cards on Netflix!
On behalf of the Entertainment Consumers Association (ECA) and GamePolitics, we wish you a happy and safe New Year's Day. If you are old enough to party, then please don't party too hearty, don't drink and drive, and please try not to throw up on any plants or small animals if you did party a little more than you should have. We wish that all of your hopes and dreams for 2013 came true, but if they didn't don't let that get you down: tomorrow is the start of a new day in a brand new year.
If you heard that Valve's hit Zombie shooter Left 4 Dead 2 was free for a limited time but didn't get it yet - don't fret, there's still time. According to Valve's Left 4 Dead blog you have until 9 am PDT, or 1 pm EDT. From the blog:
All of us at GamePolitics and the Entertainment Consumers Association wish you a happy, safe, and joyous holiday! May all your dreams come true, DRM-free, without limits, and with no hidden clauses buried five pages deep in a document written by a soulless corporate robot!
We'll see you again on Thursday!
Glad tidings to all.
(Image © 2013, Shutterstock.com.)
Ron Nakada, a Senior Software Engineer at Blizzard Entertainment was diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer six months ago. Doctors told him at the time that the cancer had metastasized to his liver, lungs and lymph nodes. While Ron is fighting for his life with all the determination and strength he can muster, his medical bills and expenses are ramping up and he needs our help.
Pay-what-you-want indie-focused game store IndieGameStand is hosting a 12-day event to celebrate the holiday season and benefit the children's charity Child's Play. From Dec. 18 - 28 the site will host a 12 Days of Christmas unwrapping event.
Here's how it works: each day IndieGameStand will reveal and spotlight a new indie game that is freely available on the internet. By donating, customers will unlock these games in their IndieGameStand account and all proceeds will be donated to Child's Play.
A new report from the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) claims that video games, video game systems, and accessories are the most wanted items for the 2013 holiday season. according to the report, approximately 79 million Americans intend to purchase video games during the holiday season, according to new market research and analysis.
Rock Band and Dance Central developer Harmonix has confirmed that it has laid off a number of its staff, though the company says that the number of employees let go is a small number.
"We can confirm that a small number of Harmonix employees were let go today," a Harmonix representative told GameSpot. "This decision was made due to shifting staffing priorities for Harmonix's multiple future projects."
AbleGamers Charity has launched the 2013 AbleGamers Holiday Gift Guide for Gamers with Disabilities. This year's guide offers recommendations on which games were the most accessible and which assistive devices are the best solutions for helping disabled gamers. In addition to all that, the guide offers recommendations on several items you may want to avoid altogether.
On behalf of GamePolitics and the Entertainment Consumers Association (ECA), I wish all of our readers in the United States a safe and happy Thanksgiving Day holiday. We also want to wish those who observe Hanukkah (which began yesterday) a joyous and safe holiday season as well. For the rest of the world, we hope you enjoy the rest of the week and in Europe we hope you finally get your hands on those brand new console systems.
You may have noticed that we are not actually in the office today - we are enjoying a lovely Labor Day holiday instead. We will be back tomorrow with "bells on," as the old saying goes (whatever that means). In the meantime this is a good opportunity for you to share what it is you are doing on this day off from work or as the last day off before school or college starts anew for many of you (if you do not have today off then I apologize on behalf of whomever you work for).
Universal Orlando Resort in Orlando, Florida will be adding a video game-themed attraction to celebrate Halloween this year: Resident Evil. The survival horror video game series Resident Evil from Capcom will become a haunted house at Halloween Horror Nights 23 at the amusement park. Other attractions for Halloween Horror Nights 23 include The Walking Dead, Evil Dead, An American Werewolf in London, and Cabin in the Woods.
Since it declared itself from the tyranny of a King and a land thousands of miles away America has not been a perfect place. Even as our founding fathers, who wrote that " that all men are created equal," in the Declaration of Independence, they only acknowledged that a select group of few men could have access to those rights under the law.
On behalf of everyone at the Entertainment Consumers Association and GamePolitics I'd like to wish all of our wonderful readers a very Happy Easter and Passover. The ECA offices are closed in observance of the holiday beginning on Good Friday so expect this space to be relatively quiet unless something ultra exciting happens tomorrow.
We'll be back here with bells on on Monday. As always thank you for reading our publication and for the stimulating and spirited conversations in the comments and the shout box. You are the reason we get out of bed every morning!
Are you at work today? Did you know it's a U.S. federal holiday?
Yep, today is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, a day we observe the birthday (actually Jan. 15th but we observe it on the third Monday of every January for convenience's sake) of one of our nation's history's greatest orators and civil rights activists.
On behalf of the ECA, our writers and contributors and myself, we wish you a happy, safe and healthy New Year. While 2012 had its fair share of ups and downs, Internet freedom and free speech had a very good year. Draconian laws and treaties that would have limited free speech and taken away our rights to privacy were soundly defeated by a vocal majority in countries all over the world.
Mojang's popular world building game franchise Minecraft had a wonderful Christmas / holiday season, according to tweets from company co-founder and Minecraft creator Markus 'Notch' Persson. According to Notch, the company sold 453,000 copies of the game across all platforms during the Christmas season.
"Across all platforms, Minecraft sold 453k copies on dec 24! Wowzers! <3," he tweeted.
He corrected himself in a follow-up tweet shortly thereafter:
On Christmas day iOS and Android device activations were greater than any other day in history, according to a new report from mobile analytics company Flurry. As highlighted by VentureBeat Flurry claims that over 17 million new smartphones and tablets were activated on Christmas day. Compared to the rest of December, new iOS and Android activations rose a whopping 332 percent on Christmas Day.
As Charlie Brown might say, "Well, another Christmas has come and gone."
So, did you get a video game for Christmas? That's what this week's poll is asking so roll up you sleeves and get to voting. Tell us all about the game(s) you got or wanted in the comments section below or email SuperPACPodcast@gmail.com.
We should have a new podcast for you next week so we'll discuss the results of the poll and our Christmas hauls on episode 34 of Super Podcast Action Committee.
On behalf of myself (James Fudge), Andrew Eisen, E. Zachary Knight, GamePolitics, and the ECA family, we wish you a happy, safe and wondrous holiday. No matter what you believe in (or don't believe in), whether you are surrounded by friends and family, or are on your own, we hope that you have a full 24 hours filled with joy, hope for the future, and peace.